Office of Sponsored Research - 500.19 - Budget Revisions


Office of Sponsored Research - 500.19 - Budget Revisions


This operating standard defines and emphasizes the actions necessary for completing budget revisions to sponsored accounts.

Policy Statement

Budget revisions for sponsored awards must be approved by the sponsoring agency, must be coordinated through the Office of Sponsored Research (OSR), and provided for through either budget revision provisions in the terms and conditions of the award or by agency approval of a budget revision request. All budget revisions must be submitted using the correct form and sent to

Budget revisions are to be based upon the financial plan and cost trends for the designated award budget period. To the extent possible, budget revisions must reflect all necessary reallocations of resources foreseeable to the end of the budget period.

As the University is legally bound to operate within the terms and conditions of each award accepted by OSR on its behalf, the following actions must be taken prior to submitting a budget revision:

  • Review of the award is imperative prior to submitting a budget revision, as it specifies restrictions on budget revisions.
  • Review of restriction codes to the award account. Restriction codes, which indicate the types of allowable budget revisions for the applicable award account, are based on the award terms and conditions.
  • Preparation of a written request for permission to make a budget revision that is currently restricted in ConnectCarolina or differs from those presented in the award. Written requests for such revisions must be signed by the Principal Investigator (PI) and submitted to OSR is the sole designee that may officially accept approvals from a sponsoring agency on behalf of the University. Receipt of approval of budget revisions must be made to OSR before revisions can be completed.

OSR requires a minimum of three (3) business days to process budget revisions that do not require prior sponsor approval. Sponsor approved budget revision requests often require a longer processing period unrelated to actions taken in OSR. Thus, PIs and Departmental Administrators (DAs) are encouraged to complete requests in a timely manner.


  1. The transfer of funds between award accounts is strictly prohibited.
  2. Revisions solely for the purpose of coping with near-term problems (e.g., a $35.00 overdraft in the supplies category) should be avoided. If resources in all categories are already substantially committed to known requirements, a budget revision can only serve to defer and likely complicate, not resolve, a financial problem. In such cases, reduction of the project scope and effort may be the only viable solution.
  3. Under the Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP), the National Science Foundation (NSF), the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have delegated prior budget revision approval authority to certain grant recipients.

Related Requirements

Unit Policies, Standards, & Procedures

Contact Information

For questions regarding this operating standard and its related procedure, please contact

For questions regarding Pre-Award management or Post-Award administration, please contact the assigned Sponsored Projects Specialist (SPS).

For invoicing, reporting and other financial matters, please contact the assigned Sponsored Projects Accountant. OSR Staff assignments are found in RAMSeS or on the OSR website.


Document History
Date Revision
06/12/2018 Revised to include the budget revision form.
05/15/2018 Revised to coincide with the release of the new OSR Website.

The operating standards in the Office of Sponsored Research Operating Standards & Procedures Manual supersede any OSR operating standards, procedures and appendices previously included in the University Business Manual, a publication of UNC-Chapel Hill’s Division of Finance.

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Article ID: 132323
Thu 4/8/21 9:28 PM
Fri 7/23/21 1:06 AM
Effective Date
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02/19/2021 9:19 AM
Issuing Officer
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Issuing Officer Title
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Distinguished Professor
Last Review
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02/19/2021 9:19 AM
Last Revised
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05/17/2019 12:00 AM
Date on which the original version of this document was first made official.
07/01/2008 12:00 AM
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